NIN Token: Telecom Consumers Rejects January Introduction

Isa Pantami

Telecom consumers under the aegis of the National Association of Telecoms Subscribers have kicked against the plan by the Federal Government to introduce a suite of digital tokens to enhance the verification of the National Identity Number, effective January next year

According to the Federal Government, the digital token consisting 16 alphabets and numbers will be accepted for third-party verification, instead of the 11-digit NIN.

The development has been greeted with mixed reactions from Nigerians.

However, the President, NATS, Adeolu Ogunbanjo, said the move was currently uncalled for, and shouldn’t be implemented without proper consultation with stakeholders.

He said, “Why can’t the FG engage stakeholders before coming up with this plan? It is a serious policy and they didn’t even engage stakeholders. Why can’t we do that?

“Until they discuss with all relevant stakeholders, and we look at the merits and demerits; they can’t impose this on us.”

Ogunbanjo recalled the development was coming barely a year after the Federal Government mandated citizens to link their SIMs to their NINs within a short period, forcing many Nigerians to besiege registration centres.

He said, “I do not know why the FG is always rushing things on its citizens, remember when they were also going to start the SIM-NIN linkage, it was announced in a hurry too.

“Why is this government rushing its citizens without proper enlightenment? Nobody knows what this V-NIN is all about, they are coming up with it this month and they want to implement it next month. They must start educating the citizenry first.

“We are not sure if the Federal Government doesn’t have an agenda with all these things. This is because we now have about five or six different means of national identification.”

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